Testing for Pathogens in Black River and Pine and Mill Creeks
The Southwest Michigan Planning Commission has received grant funds from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to test for pathogens (or E. coli) in the Black River and two tributaries of the Paw Paw River (Pine and Mill Creeks).
Pine and Mill Creek Watersheds have land in both Van Buren and Berrien Counties south of Hartford and Watervliet. Both Pine and Mill Creeks do not meet state water quality standards for E. coli.
The Black River Watershed is within Van Buren and Allegan Counties. South Haven’s beaches were closed twice in 2010 due to E. coli contamination. The City and Van Buren County Drain Commissioner have been proactive in finding and eliminating sources of E. coli.
Through this grant, testing for E. coli was done in the summer and fall of 2012 to better understand where the E.coli may be coming from and how to eliminate the pollution sources. Next, DNA analysis will be conducted on the samples to determine the sources of the E. coli. Then a plan of action will be developed to reduce E. coli pollution in the rivers.
If you are interested in this project, please contact Marcy Colclough, Southwest Michigan Planning Commission at 269-925-1137 x 1525.